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Systems, roles and relationships in the governance ecology
Uppsala universitet.
Linköpings universitet.
2011 (English)Conference paper, Published paper (Refereed)
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2011. p. -14
National Category
Business Administration
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:sh:diva-39262OAI: oai:DiVA.org:sh-39262DiVA, id: diva2:1366872
Conference
Australian and New Zealand Academy of Management Conference, Wellington, December 7-9, 2011.
Note

As manuscript in dissertation.

Available from: 2014-04-23 Created: 2019-10-31 Last updated: 2019-10-31Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. Roles of accounting information in managerial work
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Roles of accounting information in managerial work
2014 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Managerial work has been described as fragmented, action-oriented, and highly interpersonal, leaving limited room for formal planning and analysis. Even so, managers are expected to engage with accounting information for planning and analysing their area of responsibility. Accounting information has, however, been found to be tardy, aggregated, and incomplete, leading managers to rely on a wide set of additional informational resources. Still, managers’ doings and concerns tend to remain largely in the background in much management accounting research, which leaves us with limited knowledge of how accounting information comes into play in managers’ work. Moreover, technologies aimed at accommodating managers’ information needs are becoming increasingly sophisticated, and allow for timelier and more precise accounting information. This gradual transformation of technologies has led to questions concerning how management accounting is practised, and how it is related to accounting information systems. The aim of this dissertation is to identify roles of accounting information in managerial work in order to better understand the link between managerial work and management accounting systems. The dissertation consists of two volumes, each with three papers and a summary appraisal. The empirical material consists of interviews with a cross-sectional sample of mainly first-line managers, and a study of a construction firm including interviews with higher- and lower-level managers, observations of workshops where higher-level managers and staff discuss the management accounting systems, and internal documents. Overall, this dissertation suggests four roles of accounting information, based on its capacity to serve as representation, translation, key and perspective. Essentially, these roles reflect the ability of accounting information to both aggregate and disaggregate “reality”. The potential of each of these roles is shaped by managerial, organisational and technological issues, and is not always easily realised. The potential of these roles is particularly challenged in an environment with many local contexts. By accentuating what makes accounting information more and less valuable vis-à-vis other informational resources, this dissertation adds clarity to the emerging body of literature on managers’ situated use of accounting information, and to the debate on information technologies and management accounting.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Uppsala: Uppsala University, 2014. p. 77
Series
Doctoral thesis / Företagsekonomiska institutionen, Uppsala universitet ; 171
Keywords
Accounting information, Managerial work, Managers, Management Accounting Systems, Accounting information systems, Informational resources, Construction industry
National Category
Business Administration
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:sh:diva-39242 (URN)
Available from: 2019-10-31 Created: 2019-10-29 Last updated: 2019-10-31Bibliographically approved
2. Puzzle or Mosaic? On Managerial Information Patterns
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Puzzle or Mosaic? On Managerial Information Patterns
2011 (English)Licentiate thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Managers and information are key components in most management control literature, and a range of tools and concepts have been developed to better accommodate the information needs of managers so as to ensure efficient action and intelligent decisions. At the same time, the managerial work is often described as highly fragmented, unstructured and interpersonal, with little time for planning and isolated reflection. It is therefore relevant to explore how and to what extent new technologies come into play in managerial information patterns. Furthermore, new management concepts and tools could potentially give rise to new control practices, resulting from e.g. novel relations between managers and other actors, new influential roles, and alternative forms of information flows.

These issues are addressed in three papers. The first paper examines the portfolio of information that managers use in their daily work, thereby putting formal information systems into the context of less formal sources. The study is based on interviews with a variety of managers in different organisations. The second paper discusses the interplay between formally designed information-based practices, and the individual perceptions and habits that emerge in relation to the formalised. People at different levels in two public-sector organisations form the basis of the second paper. The third paper explores how various control practices operate together in a government agency, thereby providing new perspectives on how management control is exercised in a knowledge-intensive organisation.

It is suggested that managerial information patterns evolve slowly compared to the technological development. Obtaining an overview of one’s area of responsibility is mainly achieved through dialogue and interaction with others. However, new technologies have influenced the more routine exchange of information, thereby causing increased dispersion among users and creating new roles. Subordinates constitute a vital influence on the managerial role and on how managers reason concerning their use of information. This people-oriented type of management results in the use of a multitude of pieces of information that is sometimes very subtle and retrieved in spontaneous interaction. The multidimensional and emerging nature of information provides insight into both the strengths and the limitations of formalising managerial information patterns. Furthermore, various information patterns are interrelated, e.g., they complement each other, substitute each other, or serve different purposes at different times. In total, managerial information patterns resemble a mosaic rather than a puzzle that can be solved by specific pieces. Management information should therefore be viewed from a broader perspective in order to better understand managers’ information needs, how control practices emerge and how information systems come into play.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Linköping University, 2011. p. 26
Series
Linköping Studies in Science and Technology. Thesis, ISSN 0280-7971 ; 1483
Keywords
information patterns; information behaviour; information systems; management information; management control; governance; management control as a package
National Category
Business Administration Information Systems, Social aspects
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:sh:diva-39243 (URN)
Available from: 2019-10-31 Created: 2019-10-29 Last updated: 2019-10-31Bibliographically approved

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Citation style
  • apa
  • ieee
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  • vancouver
  • harvard-anglia-ruskin-university
  • apa-old-doi-prefix.csl
  • Other style
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